Cooks Shipyard

Development of 98 houses and flats, B1 offices and live/work units on the site of a former shipyard fronting the River Colne within the conservation village of Wivenhoe for Taylor Wimpey

The brief was to develop a bespoke design of houses, flats and B1 offices to reflect the requirements of the illustrative masterplan forming part of the Outline Planning Consent.  Considerable research and design development went into the Outline proposals in order to promote an organic layout, perimeter block development and building forms to complement the character of Old Wivenhoe and the historical use of the site as a shipyard.  Therefore, a modern interpretation of the local vernacular building style was required to successfully integrate the development within the existing settlement of Old Wivenhoe, part of which is a designated Conservation Area.

The form and layout of the development delivers a high density, low rise solution which combines traditional vernacular design and construction with contemporary contextual construction to reflect the former use of the site as required by the Outline Planning Consent.  The layout is urban in its character with a street and footpath system which is both organic and irregular.  The majority of the rights of way through the site have been retained to increase the level of accessibility and permeability.

Traditional materials were used in parts of the development to help the scheme harmonise with its surroundings, once matured and gently weathered.  These traditional buildings have roofs of plain tile whilst external elevations are largely fair-faced brickwork, with some painted brickwork, rendering and weatherboarding.  A variety of colours, typical of the older settlement were adopted in order to add interest and vibrancy to the street scenes.  The mixed use apartment/employment buildings fronting the River are contextual contemporary reflecting the form, massing and colour of the former shipyard sheds with Kalzip clad pitched roofs and rain screen cladding to their elevations.

Phase 2 was a winner of The Housing Design Awards 2006 project category.